Helpful Information and Resources

At the Tip of Your Fingers


Family Therapy

Raising children is not only one of the most rewarding tasks a parent can experience, but it can also be one of the most stressful. As children grow and develop, they will endure new challenges which may be welcomed or could be fraught with stress. For instance, as your child goes through primary and secondary school, they could be subject to bullying, may start to feel overwhelmed by the demands of school, may feel that there is something wrong with them, or could suddenly start refusing school altogether. We also find that children whose parents are unhappy, or have decided to separate, frequently blame themselves, which understandably causes significant distress and may impact on their ability to concentrate, socialise, mood instability and affect emotional well-being. Sometimes it can be difficult for adults to understand how difficult children's problems can be because we view the problem through our own eyes, with many more years worth of experience and a much strong sense of self. But the pressures of school and growing up can be very hard for some children to cope with successfully.

If your child is upset or troubled, the majority of the time they are unlikely to talk about it. However, there are some warning signs you may notice in the event that your child is under pressure.

Changes in Behaviour: Your child might withdraw from their friends and lose interest in the hobbies and games they previously enjoyed.

Changes in Temperament: Your child may start to have sudden outbursts of anger over fairly small incidents or they may become more sensitive than usual and easily upset.

Physical Complaints: Your child may start to complain of headaches, stomach pains, and frequent tiredness despite good health. They might also complain of sleeping difficulties and may change their eating habits.

Changes in Thinking: Your child may say things that indicate a disliking for themselves, exhibit low self-esteem, or high levels of self-blame. They may have difficulty concentrating or frequently experience negative thoughts and in some cases, they may even think about suicide.

Considering the difficulties that come with trying to support a child or young adult, we have ensured that we have experienced practitioners who are well equipped to help your child, adolescent or young adult. We are able to work with you all either independently and liaise with parents, or work with the child and parents together to ensure a positive outcome.

Another stage of life that may also cause emotional and psychological distress can be when the child becomes an adult and begins their own journey of marriage and parenthood. If there have been unresolved issues stemming from the past, often they start to unconsciously affect their current relationship(s) and family. Often we have had to bring in adults to have an effective dialogue on those limiting beliefs that have been carried from childhood into the present adult life.

Various techniques can be used within these sessions depending on the age of your child, the relationships they have, their level of maturity and communication skills, and the issues that they are trying to cope with.

If you would like to know more about the types of support we can offer your family, please call us on 0418 105 574 for a confidential discussion.  

Outdoors in Autumn

Depression and Anxiety

Symptoms of depression

One of the most common mental health conditions in the world today is depression. However, of an even bigger concern is the stigma and labels associated to clients with depressive symptoms. This can have a detrimental affect on individuals that may be suffering symptoms of depression and as such, Positive Connections staff are conscious of the stigma and labels which result in a more comfortable process addressing symptoms, rather than focussing on a diagnosis. Depression can be split into two main areas. Those with a condition as diagnosed as 'depression' and those individuals that may be 'feeling depressed'. The distinction may appear to be only slight, however for individuals it can have a major impact. Of the utmost importance is how Counsellors treat the symptoms.The use of the term depression, within this page, indicates the interchangeability for both the condition and the feelings of depression. However, please do not self diagnose, and do not discount any feelings you may have that are typical of feeling 'blue' or 'down'.

Depression can affect individuals of any age and gender. Although people may feel down or blue at times within their life, clinically diagnosed depression is a serious mental health concern which impacts not only individuals mentally but physical well-being. There is a comprehensive checklist to determine if an individual is potentially suffering symptoms of depression, which, if left untreated may result in a diagnosis of depression.

What are the symptoms of depression?

1. Low mood which may include feelings of sadness and emptiness

2. Guilt or feelings of worthlessness and negative thoughts

3. Lack of interest in activities that you once enjoyed

4. Reduced emotional control

5. Lack of concentration and/or indecisiveness

6. Sleep problems, such as insomnia and hypersomnia (too much sleep)

7. Loss of appetite and change in diet

8. Tiredness, loss of energy

9. Recurrent thoughts of death and suicide. Important: If you are feeling suicidal, it is very important to seek immediate support by calling Lifeline - a 24 hour telephone counselling service on 13 11 14 and talk to a trained counsellor now.

For a diagnosis to be made by a mental health practitioner, five or more of the above mentioned depressive symptoms would have to be present during the same two-week period and must represent a significant change from the person's previous mood and functioning. Again, please do not self-diagnose. If you believe that you have symptoms of depression consult with a mental health practitioner immediately. What are the different types of depression?

The main types of depression are:

1. Combined anxiety and depression

2. Major depressive disorder

3. Postnatal depression

4. Bipolar mood disorder

5. Adjustment disorder with depressed mood.

How can Positive Connections assist? If you are having problems with what you believe are potentially depressive symptoms, have been asked to seek counselling by a GP or, if you are a family member that requires assistance to provide a positive intervention and assist someone you love, please call us on 0418 105 574 for a confidential discussion.


Anxiety is a general term for several disorders that cause nervousness, fear, apprehension, and worrying. These disorders affect how we feel and behave and can manifest into physical symptoms. Mild anxiety is subtle yet unsettling, while severe anxiety can be extremely debilitating, having a serious impact on work, relationships and daily life. Anxiety is quite natural when about to sit a test, interview or a public speaking engagement. However anxiety is considered a problem when symptoms interfere with a person's ability to sleep or otherwise function. Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD) occurs when a reaction is out of proportion with what might be normally expected in a situation.If you would like to explore whether a generalised anxiety disorder is having an impact on your life, please call us on 0418 105 574 for a confidential discussion.